I’ve been a fan of Theo, the Seattle bean-to-bar chocolate maker, since they opened their doors in 2006. Theo is one of the only companies in the country making chocolate from organic, fair-trade cocoa that it sources itself. Naturally, I was excited when I heard they had a new cookbook out. Theo Chocolate: Recipes &
Sweet Secrets from Seattle’s Favorite Chocolate Maker by Debra Music and Joe Whinney, co-founders of Theo (Sasquatch Books, 2015; $24.95), includes sweet and savory recipes for cooking with chocolate at home, along with the fascinating story of how Theo came to be (you’ll have to get the book to find out – no spoilers here!).
Theo has also just launched a new line of organic, soy-free baking bars, so you can experience the recipes in this book with the correct chocolate. I chose an ooey-gooey chocolate cookie to try out from the book, and it’s a keeper that may just be added to my holiday cookie tray (hey, the competition is stiff!). I used a 70%
chocolate, as directed, but it’s not Theo brand chocolate. The cookies still turned out wonderfully, all melty and ultra-chocolatey, but I am eager to try the new Theo baking bars. It’s certainly worth checking out the Theo website to see the amazing line of chocolates from this smart and responsible company. www.theochocolate.com
Recipe from Theo Chocolate: Recipes & Sweet Secrets from Seattle’s Favorite Chocolate Maker by Debra Music and Joe Whinney (Sasquatch Books, 2015; $24.95)
Makes about 2 dozen cookies
10 ounces (283 grams) 70% dark chocolate, chopped, divided
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
1/3 cup (44 grams) all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon finely ground Fair Trade coffee beans
2 eggs, at room temperature
¾ cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
2. Melt 7 ounces of the chocolate with the butter in a double boiler and set aside to cool slightly.
3. Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together in a small bowl, stir in the coffee, and set aside.
4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the eggs and sugar together on medium speed until very thick and pale, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix well. Fold in the cooled chocolate mixture, then the dry ingredients, and finally the remaining 3 ounces chopped chocolate and the walnuts.
5. Use 2 spoons or a small cookie scoop to drop rounded tablespoons of batter 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, until they’re puffed, shiny and cracked, 8 to 10 minutes. Let the cookies cool completely on the baking sheet – they will be very fragile.